Russell was born in Dundee but exiled in Edinburgh as an adult. This hasn’t stopped him following his hometown team Dundee Football Club and what better way celebrate this then collect match worn football shirts!
Why collect Dundee shirts?
I’ve been a football fan since I watched the Italia 90 World Cup, I really loved the kits of that era before templates became such a dominate force in kit designs. When it came to choosing a club team I really had no option, my Grandad was a dyed in the wool Dee fan for many years so took me along and the rest is history as they say.
How many shirts do you have in your collection?
I have about 200 shirts all in but these are spread over various teams (Scotland, Serie A and various Eastern Bloc sides). My Dundee collection is 46 at the latest count, hoping to grow this in the near future.
What was the first shirt in your collection?
My first ever shirt was a 1989/90 home shirt made by Matchwinner, which was my Christmas gift from my Mum and Dad as a young boy.
The first shirt I bought for myself for collection purposes is still one of my favourites. It’s a match worn number 14 Asics 1992/93 home shirt, I got it for £4 when I saw it in the window of a local charity shop! It’s from the era when the stitched badges gave away match worn shirts so jumped at the chance. Believe it was worn by Andy Kiwomya, brother of Chris of Arsenal fame, among others.
What is your favourite shirt?
My favourite shirt is a match worn 1995/96 home shirt. We had two iterations of this shirt, one for the first few games of the season that had the central Matchwinner logo and badge before we moved on to the more traditional layout. My shirt is the number 5 which was worn by my childhood hero Morten Weighorst who was a phenomenal player. It’s crazy to think that in those days we were a middling Scottish First Division team, yet had full Danish Internationalists. The team had a memorable season going on a run to the League Cup Final that year.
Honourable mentions also for my 2000/01 home shirt worn by Argentine Legend Claudio Caniggia and a match prepared Kosta Gadshalov 3rd shirt from the 2015/16 season. This shirt was a tribute to the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Loos where many Dundonian soldiers perished so it was nice to acknowledge a piece of local history.
What is the rarest shirt in your collection?
My rarest Dee shirt is a competition between three, either
Match worn number 13 shirt from 1980/83 season. The Umbro shirts of that era fight it out with the Admiral shirts of the late 70’s as the classic shirts in most Dee fans eyes. Umbro wins it for me though as I’m a traditionalist and always think that Dundee kits have to have white shorts!
Jim Duffy Testimonial 1987-89 match worn home shirt with the details embroidered into the shirt. Mine was worn by then captain Gordon Chisholm who went on to be an ever so slightly less popular manager several years later. The game was played v a premier league select when it was thought Duffy would have to retire through injury.A prototype of the Xara 2004/05 away shirt. In my opinion this is an infinitely nicer shirt than the awful away shirt we had for what turned out to be a relegation season.
I also have a large collection of non Dundee shirts and I think the rarest of those is a Soviet Union shirt from the 1991/92 period. The soviets at that point were wearing all sorts of different kits but this one was worn in a friendly v Argentina in 1991 at Old Trafford plus a couple of other games. I also have a 1980’s Dynamo Berlin shirt made by the classic East German manufacturer Kotaura, that’s a really lovely shirt.
What shirt would you most like to collect?
Any of the Umbro ones from the early 80’s really, especially the one season wonder from 1983/84. I’ve only ever seen one once and it was a guy wearing it at Julian Speroni’s testimonial v Crystal Palace. I would have bought it off his back if he was a willing seller!
Would also like to have one of the Admiral shirts from the late 70’s although strangely many of these were sold as unbadged replica shirts.
In terms of Match worn shirts I would love one worn by Dariusz Adamczuk who was my favourite player post Morten Weighorst. I have a 98/99 reserve shirt that was his number (4) but have no way of tying it back to having being worn by the great man himself. Also a shirt from the 2015 -16 “Doon Derby” where Dundee relegated rivals United would be a very welcome addition.